Characters: Ready Player One

    open/close all folders 

    The "High Five" 

The High Five

  • Five-Man Band: Somewhat.
    • The Hero: Parzival
    • The Lancer: Aech
    • The Big Guy: Daito is somewhat of a Type 1. He never joins the group in full, but does fulfill the role in the long run.
    • The Smart Girl: Art3mis, especially prominent in the finale, when she knows more about "Tempest" than Wade does, and kept a real-life copy of her egg notes, considering her account had died.
    • The Heart: Shoto, oddly considering his Red Oni status to Daito.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Following Daito's death.
    • Sanguine: Aech
    • Choleric: Parzival
    • Leukine: Shoto, though with some elements of Sanguine as well.
    • Melancholic: Art3mis, to a degree.
  • Kid Heroes: They're all, at maximum, about twenty.
  • Meaningful Name - With the exception of Aech. Art3mis and Parzival are both named after famous hunters (The God of the Hunt and the knight who found the Holy Grial), while Shoto and Daito are named after the pair of swords a samuraii wears.

Parzival (Wade Owen Watts)

The protagonist of the novel, Wade Watts is a kid in the slums of Oklahoma City who becomes the first person to find the Copper Key, starting the true hunt five years after it began.

Aech (Helen Harris)

Wade's best friend in the OASIS, he starts as a professional arena fighter who also works as a gunter. "He" is really a she, the African American, lesbian Helen Harris.

Art3mis (Samantha Evelyn Cook)

A female gunter who Wade has a geek crush on. They start dating somewhat as the contest goes on, but break it off after a while for the duration of the contest.
  • Action Girl: In the OASIS.
  • Badass Bookworm: Like any prominent gunter.
  • Gamer Chick
  • Girls with Guns: In the OASIS.
  • Humongous Mecha: For clearing the Jade Gate, she gets a copy of Minerva X that she can pilot.
  • Leet Speak: Since straight up "Artemis" was taken.
  • Love Interest: To Parzival.
  • Magic Knight: The first prominent one Wade interacts with in the OASIS.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Subverted. Art3mis flies off the handle at Wade when she learns that he lied about having beaten the Ancient Tomb Lich and thereby obtaining The Copper Key, but she's not really as angry about his dishonesty as she is about the fact that he beat the Lich on the first try when it took her five weeks. She later apologizes for blowing up and acknowledges that he was only doing what any Gunter in his place would have done.

Daito (Toshiro Yoshiaki)

Shoto's "older brother" in the OASIS, he's rather brash and irritable. He is murdered by IOI when they throw him off a balcony in his home while he is protecting Shoto as he goes for the Jade Gate.

Shoto (Akihide Karatsu)

Daito's "little brother" in the OASIS, he serves as a voice of reason. Following Daito's murder, he stops caring about getting the Egg and aims for revenge instead.

    Major Characters 

Nolan Sorrento (IOI-#655321)

Head of Operations at the Oology Division of Innovative Online Industries, Sorrento hopes to gain the Egg so that IOI can take control of the OASIS, putting charges on using the simulation at all.

Ogden "Og" Morrow (The Great And Powerful Og)

Co-creator of the OASIS and close friend of Halliday, he left Gregarious Simulation Systems some years prior to Halliday's death due to his belief that it was becoming a Lotus-Eater Machine. Halliday entrusted him with keeping the contest for the egg cheating-free, and he helps the High Five's remaining members in the finale by giving them a safe real-life place to log into the OASIS.
  • Big Good: By the finale.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Do not crash his OASIS party and start a fight. He has Superuser rights since he helped create it.
    • In the real world, he is obscenely rich, and is able to quickly spirit the kids away to safety when he learns IOI intends to have them killed off, using a fleet of limosines and private jets when most people can't even afford bus fare. This ends up facilitating IOI's defeat in the final battle.
  • Cool Old Guy: He's in his seventies, and still acts like he's a teenager at heart.
  • The Mourning After: He never remarries after Kira dies.
  • One of the Kids: He acts like any gunter, even calling out IOI on live television and laughing about it.
  • Physical God: In the OASIS.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: Both Ogden's avatar can do pretty much whatever he wants, including snoop on private chat rooms. An unusual benevolent example, as Ogden is using his powers to keep an eye on the High Five so he can help them out if they need it.

James Donovan Halliday (Anorak)

Creator of the OASIS and starter of the hunt for the Egg, Halliday was a computer programming genius prior to his death. An Eccentric Millionaire, he's modeled after Howard Hughes and Richard Garriott.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: It is speculated in-universe that he had Asperger's Syndrome, but this remains speculation rather than a formal diagnosis.
  • Celibate Eccentric Genius: Though he was in love with Kira.
  • Eccentric Millionaire: Very much so. It's speculated postmortem that he had a form of Asperger's Syndrome.
  • Expy: The author compares Halliday to Bill Gates, based on Howard Hughes and Richard Garriott.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Why he didn't talk to Ogden for so long. He was jealous of him having Kira's love.
  • Lonely at the Top: As he admits to Parzival.
  • My Death Is Just the Beginning: His death began the hunt for the Egg.
  • Passing the Torch: The entire point of the Egg.
  • Physical God: His avatar in the OASIS was.
  • Posthumous Character. The book begins five years after his death.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: Even more so than Ogden's avatar. His office holds the kill switch to the OASIS itself, meaning he could end the simulation permanently at any time. He gives this power to Parzival for getting the Egg.
  • Virtual Ghost: Subtly hinted at. Halliday is gone but his influence is still felt very strongly in the OASIS. Wade even talks to a very advanced AI version of Halliday's avatar after obtaining the egg.

    Minor Characters 

Aunt Alice

The sister of Wade's deceased mother, his aunt lives with her current boyfriend Rick and regularly pawns off Wade's possessions to pay for rent for the three of them.
  • Asshole Victim: Deconstructed for her and her boyfriend. Even though they were jerks, Wade doesn't think they deserved to die.
  • Jerkass: Her only scene involves selling Wade's possessions and yelling at him.
  • Jerkass Victim: Deconstructed. Even though she is painted in her scene and general narrative as a horrible woman, Wade comments several times that it wasn't enough that she deserved to die.
  • Killed Off for Real: She and her boyfriend are killed when a bomb under the trailer they live in blows up when Sorrento tries to kill Wade for rejecting his proposal.
  • Nephewism: Ironic, considering Wade's Alliterative Name and his father's love of comic books.

Karen "Kira" Underwood

Ogden's late wife. Halliday's unspoken love for her and jealousy of Og was the reason why they did not speak for a decade prior to his death.